The House on Stone's Throw Island, by Dan Poblocki

Dan Poblocki is my go-to author when I need to recommend horror to an eleven or twelve year old, and his latest book, The House on Stone's Throw Island (Scholastic, Aug. 25, 2015) is another fine atmospheric and spooky story for that demographic.

Two kids, Josie and Eli, are thrown into each other's company when they head out to Stone's Throw Island, off the coast of Maine, where their older siblings are going to get married.   The house is big, the island is isolated, and as Josie and Eli start exploring it, it soon becomes clear that it is a very, very creepy place indeed.   Caves flooded at high tide echo with a voice crying for help in German, and Josie's room is haunted by the specter of a girl her own age.

And then things go really bad!  The ghosts of Stone's Throw Island are desperate for revenge, and they will possess the living in order to get it!  It is rather direct horror with lots of  omg is the really happening type terror; after the initial gentle creepiness, things explode.  If you want a book in which a ghostly Nazi submarine crewed by friends and family possessed by Nazi ghosts pursues the heroes, this is the book you have been waiting for! 

Josie and Eli add to the character side of things, especially Josie, from whose perspective we see the horror unfold.  The island setting and the historical mystery that Josie and Eli must solve, with the help of a diary written by a girl on the island in 1942,  also add elements that will appeal to those who find the ghost sub and its zombified ghost crew a tad over the top (which would be me). 

That being said, the premise of Germans in Atlantic waters is based on fact; they were here, within spitting distance of the Atlantic coast, sinking ships right and left.

Dan Pobloki will be at Kidlitcon 2015, as part of a panel on Middle Grade Horror! So come on down (or up) to Baltimore October 9th and 10th!)

disclaimer: review copy received from the publisher

1 comment:

  1. Will definitely be there! So excited about the horror panel and have an ever growing list of questions. Better too many than too few, right?


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